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Building Safety Inspections

NYC FISP / Local Law 11 Inspection Services

NYC LOCAL LAW 11: THE FACADE INSPECTION AND SAFETY PROGRAM (FISP)

Most New York City property owners and managers know that New York City’s Facade Inspection Safety Program (FISP), formerly known as Local Law 11/98, requires an inspection of a building’s exterior facades. The myriad details of the program, however, are often a source of confusion, especially those regarding filing status and follow-up repairs.

Thompson can perform your required Cycle 9A inspection, file the associated documentation, develop and execute a repair program for your outstanding Cycle 8A SWARMP and/or unsafe conditions, and assist with budgeting and phasing of future FISP-related repairs and maintenance for the long-term continuous safety of your building(s).

What is FISP?

New York City’s “Facade Inspection Safety Program” (FISP), previously known as Local Law 11, requires that owners of buildings with more than six stories above grade have their exterior walls and appurtenances inspected by a prescribed reporting schedule, currently in its 9th Cycle of inspections.

Hands-on facade inspections, which can be conducted by industrial rope access, motorized scaffolds, and boom lifts, are required along street and public-right-of-way facing facades. 

A Qualified Exterior Wall Inspector (QEWI) conducts and documents the condition of the walls with notes and photographs. The written inspection report is then filed with the New York City Department of Buildings (DOB).

Based on the conditions noted during the inspection, the QEWI will assign the following categories:

SAFE: No repair work is required within the cycle.

SWARMP: Conditions have potential to become Unsafe but do not require immediate attention. Repairs should be performed within the timeframe recommended by the QEWI, but no later than the filing deadline for the subsequent inspection cycle.

UNSAFE: Conditions represent immediate danger to the public and must be immediately addressed. The Owner must immediately commence repairs or reinforcement, and install a sidewalk shed or other measures to secure public safety.

What are the 9th Cycle Requirements?

In January 2020, the New York City Department of Buildings issued its rule change for the 9th Cycle of the Facade Inspection Safety Program. Major changes include:

  • Hands-on inspections are required every 60 feet along facades facing streets and public access ways.
  • Investigative probes are required along every 60-foot interval of cavity wall facades every other cycle (i.e. Cycle 9, Cycle 11), to check for the presence and condition of wall ties.
  • Owners must post and maintain a facades conditions certificate in the lobby, much like an elevator certificate, to alert building occupants of the status of the exterior wall(s).

When is the Deadline for Facade Inspections?

Buildings have overlapping two-year windows for filing, and are grouped according to the last digit of their block number:

For the 9th Cycle of inspections:

Block numbers ending in 4, 5, 6, or 9:
Reports must be filed between February 21, 2020 and February 21, 2022.

Block numbers ending in 0, 7, or 8:
Reports must be filed between February 21, 2021 and February 21, 2023.

Block numbers ending in 1, 2, or 3:
Reports must be filed between February 21, 2022 and February 21, 2024.

What Are the Penalties for Non-Compliance?

  • The penalty for failure to file is $5,000.
  • The monthly penalty for late filing is $1,000 per month past the deadline.
  • Owners who fail to correct an Unsafe Condition face a $1,000 per month penalty plus an additional monthly penalty based on the linear footage of sidewalk shed until the condition has been corrected and an acceptable Amended Report has been filed.
  • A civil penalty of $2,000 will be assessed for failure to correct Safe with a Repair and Maintenance Program (SWARMP) conditions by the next cycle.

If you would like a consultation or a proposal for Thompson Exterior Services to conduct a 9th Cycle facade inspection for your building and/or to design and administer FISP repair work, please contact us at 732-668-3741 or email Patrick at [email protected]

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